According to the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, natural law refers to those laws that derive their legitimacy from moral reasoning and are based on what is believed to serve the best interests of the common good while positive laws are those that obtain their legitimacy through legislative means and are enforced by civil or political authority. Based on a strict interpretation of natural law, any legal statute that conflicts with natural law is unjust and should not be obeyed. According to positive legal theory, the legitimacy of a law is not relevant to its morality, but rather stems from the power of the authority that enacted it.Know More
Positive legal theory, or legal positivism, takes its name from the verb "to posit." The idea of positive law was developed in the 1600s and grew in opposition to the concept of natural law, which can be subject to cultural relativism and personal interpretation. The early proponents of positive law, such as Thomas Hobbes and John Austin, argued that manmade and state-enforced laws are necessary to protect the rights of the governed, resolve civil disputes and to maintain safety and order in society. According to Hobbes, this reflects a social contract between the governed and those who are entrusted with the power to both create and enforce laws.
Natural law theory condones civil disobedience based on the premise that when a law is unjust, obedience to that law is also unjust. The civil disobedience advocated by Martin Luther King Jr. and Mahatma Gandhi, however, exemplifies a nonviolent form of disobedience to law and differs from the violent disobedience that represents what is generally referred to as terrorism.Learn more about Law
Common law and statutory law are two systems of law used in the American judicial system. Common law is based on prior court decisions while statutory law is made by the legislature.Full Answer >
Equity establishes justice if common law is inadequate in certain circumstances, according to Cornell University Law School. The equity route is only an option when legal recourse has been exhausted.Full Answer >
Writing a code of conduct into law establishes consistent guidelines for people to follow. Laws are drafted with any of five major principles in mind, according to About.com. The first two principles are to prevent harm to the self and others; the other three are morality, donation and statism.Full Answer >
The law is important because it serves as a norm of conduct for citizens and residents. It acts as a guideline for acceptable behavior, and ensures equality within communities and social groups by an outline for the consequences of law violations. Laws communicate what is accepted in each society.Full Answer >